four years ago…in a country far away…

courtesy of fifa.com

courtesy of fifa.com

Unfortunately, Croatia lost to Brazil yesterday 3 to 1. I could spend the rest of this blog talking about how bad the reffing was on the part of the FIFA referee, but I won’t. Sometimes, you win games and sometimes you lose. I think the most important aspect is that you are fully participating in the game and in life. I’m just super happy that Croatia made it back to the international soccer stage in such a big way.!! I can’t wait for the next few games.!! However, besides my excitement, this World Cup is bringing back memories of another World Cup.!

courtesy of fannation.com

courtesy of fannation.com

Four years ago, during World Cup 2010, I was lucky enough to be in Mexico. I had just graduated from my Master’s Program in June 2010. I also had an interview the following week lined up with Starbucks Mexico in Mexico City – which reminds me I still owe you a post for that trip.! On top of all that, my birthday was the week after the interview while I was hanging out in playa.! Also, one of my very good friends, J. aka my birthday buddy, was also celebrating her birthday a few days later.

watching World Cup 2010 at Tequila Barrel

watching World Cup 2010 at Tequila Barrel

So J. and our mutual friend, A., decided they would meet me in Playa del Carmen the week after my interview in D.F. We were going to celebrate all of our graduations plus mine and J.’s birthdays.!! All the while taking in the beach, sun, and of course some tours. Not to mention, eating, drinking, and watching as many of the World Cup 2010 games that we could catch.! And we did just that.!!

celebrating

celebrating J.’s birthday

And I have to tell you it was exhilarating.!! Everywhere in playa, people were watching the games.!! It didn’t matter what country was playing or what time of day, everyone was watching. When I would go to my boyfriend’s house to watch a game with his friends, all the houses had the games on. By the way, that’s when I first learned to curse – “chinga su madre.!” – at bad ref calls.!! Which by the way, I was also utilizing very strongly during yesterday’s opening game.!

more drinking and World Cup watching in playa

more drinking and World Cup watching in playa

Quinta Avenida was also on fire with all the bars packed with people drinking and watching the games.! And if Mexico was playing, well no one was really working. All the maseros would stop whatever they were doing when Mexico scored a goal.!! Everyone would be screaming, shouting, and high-fiving even the tourists.! Hell, even the tourists walking down Fifth Avenue would join in on the celebrating.! When in Mexico, you gotta cheer for Mexico.!! The excitement for the game was tangible.

courtesy of fifa.com

courtesy of fifa.com

And that’s what I miss about this year’s World Cup. Chicago is too big to have that electrically charged atmosphere. And unfortunately, not that many Americans watch World Cup. But I also think it’s different because the World Cups give me a timeframe, a barometer so to speak, to gauge my hopes, my dreams, and my realities. For starters, I’m no longer with that boyfriend or in Mexico for that matter. Heck, even our dream of going to World Cup Brazil 2014 didn’t materialize. But what I do have are different hopes, dreams, and realities. And, in the meantime, I have found a select, albeit small, group of soccer lovers who are going to help me cheer on the games.! But oh how I miss World Cup 2010 and all of it’s glorious memories. ¡Órale!

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